Alberta 55 plus Policy
Updated March 2017
The Association’s reputation and participation environment are based on the actions and behaviours of its members and employees.
Alberta 55 plus believes that every individual 55 years of age and over has the fundamental right to the opportunity for enrichment, fulfillment, and improved quality of life and health through a broad variety of recreation, sports, and organized games. Alberta 55 plus provides a unified voice and a sociable atmosphere for older adults to engage in physical and other activities at the level of their choice. The following Code of Conduct is designed to allow the Association to preserve its long tradition of integrity and credibility with the public and within the Association. The Code of Conduct applies to all members and employees of the Association.
Code of Conduct:
- Members must conduct themselves in a respectful manner in accordance with Alberta 55 plus bylaws.
- Always act with fairness, honesty, integrity and openness; respect the opinions of others and treat all with equality and dignity without regard to gender, race, colour, creed, ancestry, place of origin, political beliefs, religion, marital status, disability, age, or sexual orientation.
- Promote the mission and objectives of Alberta 55 plus in all dealings with the public on behalf of the Association.
- Take responsibility for your actions and decisions. Ensure that you do not exceed the authority of your position.
- Comply with Alberta 55 Plus Games Code of Conduct as outlined in every Participant Handbook for each specific Games.
- Adhere to the policies and procedures of Alberta 55 plus, including Dispute Resolution, Harassment and Abuse, Conflict of Interest, Confidentiality, and Financial.
Any violation of an Alberta 55 plus policy is to follow the stated procedure for resolution. Continued misconduct could result (with just cause) in dismissal from Boards or membership in accordance to the Alberta 55 plus Bylaws.
This policy is to provide each Alberta 55 plus member fair and unbiased opportunity to have their concerns addressed, while at the same time defining limits and timelines for all appeals. Dispute resolution is available to Alberta 55 plus members only.
The Dispute Resolution Policy is intended to provide the opportunity to resolve a conflict or complaint quickly, fairly and without reprisal, while improving communication throughout each Zone.This policy will ensure confidence in Association decisions by providing a mechanism whereby all Association decisions can be objectively reviewed.
- Level One – Involves Complainant and Area Director/Zone Coordinator
- Complainant verbally presents issue to Area Director/Zone Coordinator
- Area Director/Zone Coordinator makes note of issue including date and time
- Complainant and Area Director/Zone Coordinator address the issue
- If issue is not resolved, proceed to level two
- Level Two – Involves Complainant and Zone Board
- Complainant appeals in writing within 7 days to Zone Board
- Zone Board addresses the issue at the next regularly scheduled Board meeting or at a Special Meeting of the Zone Board in accordance with their bylaws
- Zone must make a ruling at the appeal meeting and notify Complainant within 24 hours and in writing by registered letter within 7 days
- Upon receipt of registered letter, the Complainant has 14 days to appeal in writing to the Alberta 55 plus Provincial Board
- If an appeal is presented, proceed to level three
- Level Three – Involves Complainant and Alberta 55 plus Provincial Board
- The Provincial Board will address the appeal at the next regularly scheduled meeting or at a Special Meeting of the Provincial Board in accordance with their bylaws
- The decision will be communicated to the Complainant within 24 hours of the meeting and in writing by registered letter within 7 days
- The Provincial Board may procure the services of an independent mediator if the Board does not feel adequate to make a ruling
- The decision made at Level Three by either the Board or a mediator is to be deemed FINAL with no further chance of appeal
If any level of the Dispute Resolution Policy contains the person(s) in dispute with the Complainant, the Complainant may proceed to file their grievance directly with the next higher level available. Any persons deemed to be directly related to the Dispute in question must remove themselves from all discussions and decisions made at their level, with exception of being able to fairly present their side of the argument.
Conflict of Interest
As a non-profit society and charity, Alberta 55 plus’s reputation is the basis for inspiring the trust of its membership, the various levels of government, business and the public at large. In order to conduct its affairs successfully, the Association must trust Board Members, employees and volunteers to act consistently in the Associations’ best interest.
All actions or decisions by Alberta 55 plus Provincial and Zone Board Members must be based on an impartial and objective assessment of the Association’s interests in the situation, without regard to any gifts or favours from outside interests that could adversely affect, or be seen by others as possibly affecting, their judgement.
- At both the Provincial and Zone level, members of the Board of Directors shall disclose to their respective Board prior to engaging in any activities that may be seen as conflict of interest, such as, but not limited to:
- Having a vested interest in an external business that may provide materials or service to the Association
- Being offered services or materials as a result of position with the Association
- Making use of a position with the Board to solicit services or materials for personal gain
- Utilizing association equipment, services or materials for an external business
- Pursuing personal gain over the well-being or needs of people supported
- Staff and volunteers must avoid the appearance of favouritism in all of their dealings on behalf of the Association and not accept personal gifts from those doing business or seeking to do business with the Association.
- Staff and volunteers must not commit the Association to any unauthorized expenditure or other liability and must ensure that all commitments are approved in accordance with the appropriate by-laws, regulations and policies including all appropriate consultations and approvals.
- Sole-sourcing of goods and services should not occur. All procurements of goods and services should be subjected to at least three (3) bids if possible. Extenuating circumstances may exist. Sole-sourcing is to be allowed if a known vendor with a past relationship to the Association is to be used. However, it is the responsibility of the Provincial and/or Zone Board to ensure that the costs of good and services from a known vendor are fair and reasonable.
- The person in charge of organizing and running a Provincial qualification event cannot participate in said event unless a qualified non-playing director is placed in charge during game-play. The original person in charge of organizing and running the event then has no authority in resolving any dispute which arises during game-play.
- If any decisions are to be made at a Board level where there is a known conflict of interest present, the person(s) in question are to be removed from all discussions and decisions pertaining to this matter.
Non-compliance of any portion of this policy on the part of the Alberta 55 plus members may constitute cause for removal from their role on the Provincial/Zone Board or termination of their membership in accordance to the Alberta 55 plus Bylaws.
Harassment and Abuse
All members and employees have the right to be treated fairly and with respect by everyone, and have a responsibility to treat others with the same consideration.
Harassment is a form of discrimination and is prohibited. Alberta 55 plus is committed to providing a sport and recreation environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity. All members and employees must refrain from acts of discrimination and harassment against other individuals. Such acts are unacceptable behaviour and will be subject to disciplinary action.
Examples of Harassment:
Harassment can take many forms, such as: abusive comments, conduct, gestures, insulting, intimidating, humility, malicious, degrading or offensive language or actions. Types of Harassment include, but are not limited to: Verbal abuse; Unwelcome and unwanted physical contact; Uncalled for remarks about age, race or religion; Visual Harassment.
Should a member or employee believe that s/he is a victim of discrimination or harassment, the Dispute Resolution Policy procedure is to be followed. The member has a choice of either discussing the problem (in the case of an informal concern) or submitting a formal or written concern.
The Confidentiality Policy defines and describes the management of confidential information for all employees and members of Alberta 55 plus.
Certain aspects of the Association need to be kept confidential. All employees and members of Alberta 55 plus are to respect and maintain every person’s right to privacy and confidentiality in accordance to all relevant Federal and Provincial laws.
Examples of Confidentiality Issues:
Confidentiality issues can include, but not be limited to:
- Personal medical records – the Association is to devise a safe and effective way to have personal medical records available for emergency situations but not accessible by anyone else.
- Association membership lists with address and contact information are not to be sold to any other outside party. All requests for such lists by a member of the Zone or Provincial Board must go through the Zone’s elected Membership Director.
- Provincial or Zone Board matters which have been tabled are confidential until resolved.
- At any time, a Board member may request to go in camera for a certain aspect of a meeting. This item is to then remain confidential until otherwise noted.
- Harassment and personal matters which have been formally brought to the attention of the Association are to remain confidential.
Should a member or employee purposefully breach the trust of the Association with regards to Confidentiality issues, the Dispute Resolution Policy procedure is to be followed. Breach of confidentiality could result (with just cause) in dismissal from Boards or membership in accordance to the Alberta 55 plus Bylaws.
Alberta 55 plus should have a plan to help the organization thrive while reaching its goals, and allow it to continue thriving over the long term. A Financial policy is to be available for all Zone Boards and members to have clear understanding the issue.
- As a non-profit entity, Alberta 55 plus is required to make all financial records available for public viewing in accordance to our Bylaws.
- All Board or Committee members invited to a meeting will have the costs of their travel expenses reimbursed at the current mileage and meal rates set by the Provincial Board of Directors.
- In order for reimbursement of expenses to be paid in full, the Provincial Office requires all original receipts. Without a valid receipt, payment for the expense will not be granted.
- Meal rates are not on a per diem basis. Expenses will be covered up to the amounts shown on the most recent Provincial expense form if a valid receipt is included.
- Travel expenses incurred by members of the Executive while performing duties associated with their respective executive roles at any Provincial or Zone event will be reimbursed following the same guidelines as above.
- All Zones are to submit to the Provincial office a copy of their approved Financial Statement within thirty (30) days of said meeting.
- A Financial Sustainability Plan should be formulated and reviewed by the Association to ensure the long-term viability of the Association.
- The Association shall always attempt to look at alternative funding sources to keep the membership at an affordable rate.
Download: Alberta 55 plus Policy